This year is about – making healthy swaps to your schedule-approved (and lifestyle-tolerated) diet plan. We’re not saying you can’t rip open a bag of salty, crunchy, can’t-eat-just-one chips … just that there’s a variety out there that lets you do it without tacking on hours to your gym class. Your sweet tooth, your coffee craving and your movie-night pizza must-have aren’t in danger either – but they need a makeover.
Make Breakfast Binges Beautiful | A warm, fresh pastry sure does lighten our moods on an early, not-in-the-mood-for-traffic kind of morning, but when you can eat a lot more for those same calories – and clinch some vital nutrients – the mood stays bright all day. Try making a grab-and-go smoothie like this one from Pop Sugar or – if you must drive through – choose the Oatmeal with Fruit or Yogurt Parfaits offered by Chick-Fil-A or McDonalds. They are under 300 calories with absolutely no dishes to clean up.
The Mid-Morning Pick Me Up | Yes, that whipped cream-topped frother that your desk neighbor sips on every day at 10am sure does smell good and look super chic, but it only adds an abundance of calories that would be much better enjoyed later (say, in your after work glass of red). Instead, check out the super long list of coffee and tea-inspired imbibes that Starbucks serves for under 200 calories.
The Fast-Food Grab | We’ve read that potatoes are America’s favorite vegetable. When it comes in a French fry, who can blame us? If you’ve got to have the salty stick as your side, choose Burger King’s small for less than 200 calories or check out Cascadian Farms oven-baked spuds for a homemade cure.
Enjoy Your Afternoon Snack | Something about 3 o’clock brings about a need for crunch. So, instead of shelling out dollars to the vending machine gods, stash your desk drawer with Brad’s Raw Crunchy Kale chips and Snapea Harvest Snaps.
The Sweet Tooth | It takes a strong will to deny a confection craving, and it’s better on our heart (and our hips) if we call in a few substitutes to make it through the hankering. Stock up on authentic dark chocolate (it’s loaded with antioxidants) and try freezing real fruit into popsicles, like this cool recipe from The Food Network.
The Pizza Night | Whether it’s game night or girl’s night, a cheesy, parmesan-crusted pie can’t be easily replaced. But, if you choose thin crust options, you’re cutting your carbs way back, piling on veggies instead of meats cuts sodium and fat and now, many large chains offer dairy-free and gluten-free options. That’s like a slice right from heaven.